University backs dialogue with India

1 February 2012

An initiative that brings together 30 young leaders from India and Australia to discuss contemporary economic, social, cultural and political issues, is being launched this week in Delhi.

The Australia India Youth Dialogue is designed to provide participants with an opportunity to build a stronger strategic partnership between the two countries through shared knowledge. It will be an annual event, involving 15 delegates from each country aged between 18 and 35.

The impetus behind AIYD comes from a steering committee set up in early 2011 which includes Monika Barthwal-Datta, a researcher in Asian Food Security at the Centre for International Security Studies at the University of Sydney, and Ruchir Punjabi, a former President of the University of Sydney Union.

Ruchir was the Founding Chair of the Australia India Business Council NSW Young Professionals Chapter and is currently the Vice-Chair. He is Vice-President of the International Advertising Association Australia Young Professionals and a member of the Australian Web Industry Association National Committee, the Australian Interactive Media Industry Association (NSW) Committee and the Australia India Business Council NSW Management Committee.

He is also a Board member of International House at the University of Sydney and was actively involved between 2005 and 2010 in raising awareness of problems faced by international students in Australia and helping mitigate them.

The University of Sydney is an associate partner of the Australian India Youth Dialogue, and Professor John Hearn, Deputy Vice-Chancellor International, said: "We fully support the vision of AIYD and are pleased to be part of an initiative that provides young people from both countries with an opportunity to engage in dialogue and knowledge sharing."

For more information about the AIYD go to

Contact: Richard North

Phone: 02 9351 3191

Email: 331954220045146f0717264d2b285c1b002b3c3679120500601925